Knowing how to deal with anxiety is very important as anxiety is experienced by people of all ages at various junctures in life. It is quite normal, especially when life is in full swing. It is the way in which our body responds to danger and allows us to be the most productive. In this sense, anxiety is adaptive as it promotes the survival of individuals in a broad perspective. It helps to escape and avoid danger and improve performance.Yet, anxiety becomes an issue when there is no real danger to the individual yet the body responds as if there was a great danger. In such situations, anxiety is often identified as a disorder, which needs to be treated.
Definition of Anxiety
Anxiety can be defined as an emotion, which causes nervousness, fear, worry, and apprehension. It is considered as normal when individuals encounter stressful situations. However, anxiety becomes a disorder when the reaction to a situation is out of proportion to what is normally expected. This has an adverse impact on the physical and mental well-being of an individual. Some of the common anxiety disorders are,
• Generalized anxiety disorder
• Panic disorders
• Post Traumatic Stress Disorder
• Obsessive Compulsive Disorder
Symptoms of anxiety
The symptoms of anxiety are mainly threefold. They are physical reactions, mental reactions (thoughts), and behavioural changes. Some of the physical symptoms are,
• rapid heartbeat
• tight chest,
• feeling dizzy,
• tingling sensation,
• bright vision and
When paying attention to thoughts of mental reactions, a person with anxiety would always be thinking about negative possibilities and imagining the worst. Some behavioural changes can also be seen in such a person. He or she would always try to avoid the situation of which the person is anxious about and feels a need to escape.
Causes of anxiety
As mentioned above, anxiety is not always a mental disorder. It only becomes a disorder when the reaction to a given situation is excessive and disrupts the individual’s normal functioning. In the case of anxiety disorders, they can be caused by a variety of factors. However, it has to be noted that anxiety cannot be considered as a weakness in character or else lack of strength.
• Environmental factors: Traumatic events, stressful relationships, stressful work, etc.
• Genetic factors
• Medical conditions: side effects of medication
• Brain functioning: abnormal activity of certain neurotransmitters
• Usage of substance
These are the main causal factors for anxiety and related disorders. Despite the fact that there is a wide range of causes, it does not mean that all individuals are affected by these causes to the same degree.
Dealing with anxiety
Even though anxiety cannot be completely eradicated from our lives it can be completely reduced and dealt with if we follow a proper set of guidelines. The main steps that can be employed to reduce anxiety or else treat anxiety disorders are as follows.
• Lifestyle changes
Today we live in a world where the phase of life is rather rapid. People are busy throughout the day and have very little time to enjoy the moment. With the excessive amount of stress that is fuelled within the individual, it is no wonder that the level of anxiety is rising. In order to reduce this level , the individual needs to get proper exercises, sleep, and nourishment. Through the practice of a healthy lifestyle, anxiety can be reduced. Also, it is vital to have a positive outlook to life and to cherish the personal relationships without concentrating only on work life.
• Relaxation therapy
Relaxation is also vital for the human body. This, however, does not mean consuming alcohol or playing computer games. To truly relax, a person needs to practice breathing exercises or else yoga or engage in a similar activity where an individual truly feels relaxed and without feeling tensed.
If a person is already suffering from an anxiety disorder, the best option will be to go for counselling or else psychotherapy. Through therapies such as cognitive behavioural therapy, the person begins to gain more self-awareness, which allows relieving the condition. Counsellors and psychotherapists employ a variety of methods to assist people suffering from anxiety disorders to reduce their level of anxiety.
When the anxiety level is very high and psychotherapy alone is insufficient, the usage of medication becomes rather essential. Through anxiety reducing drugs and antidepressants, anxiety can be controlled, but this is not a permanent solution as the body begins to grow tolerance to the medication. Hence, the ideal method would be the conflation of a number of strategies.
So to sum up, anxiety is a feeling of worry, fear, and nervousness, which is normal in human life. It is only when it becomes out of proportion that the anxiety becomes a disorder , which needs to be treated. If a person is suffering from anxiety, physical mental and behavioural symptoms can be identified. It can be caused due to environmental, medical, genetic, brain factors, and substance use. To deal with anxiety, a person needs to cultivate a healthy lifestyle, practice relaxation therapy, go for psychotherapy, and use medication. The best option would be to keep anxiety at a low level without having to go through adverse effects.